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What's The Advantage of SCCM Over WSUS?

Posted on 2014-11-18
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Last Modified: 2016-02-20
Points of My Scenario:
1. I am admin of a Windows domain that has a WSUS server
2. Servers run Windows Server 2008 R2 - including domain controllers and WSUS server
3. I have to assist management in deciding whether to replace WSUS with SCCM to deploy Windows updates
QUESTION: What are the advantages of deploying Windows updates by SCCM over WSUS?
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Question by:waltforbes
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by:pjam
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SCCM deploys software.  Very complicated setup, but beneficial if you need to deploy large updates to users.  Not for a small userbase.
My two cents
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by:waltforbes
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Hi pjam. I plan to use SCCM ONLY for Windows updates/security patches. My chief concern is whether SCCM allows for much greater control over the timing of the release of updates. Do you know?
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by:pjam
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Then I would definitely stick with WSUS.  I believe SCCM comes at too high a cost to fool with for updates only.  WSUS should give you all the control you need.
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by:Rob G
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I would suggest WSUS over SCCM for what you are planning.. SCCM is for enterprise software updates, not windows updates only.. everything you can do with WSUS in windows updates, you get the same thing in SCCM with windows updates, but get to pay for it..

WSUS does have a plugin (Not "officially" supported) to provide 3rd party updates as well.. and does a pretty good job..
https://wsuspackagepublisher.codeplex.com/
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Mike T earned 400 total points
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Hi,

We need more information to advise. Specifically how many machines do you have, how many updates are you talking about and how good is your network links? If you are a small company in one building with 100 machines then it's probably better to use WSUS.
SCCM uses WSUS to fetch the updates and the Windows Update Agent to pull them to the clients, so it's actually SCCM+WSUS or WSUS. The catch is do NOT configure WSUS at all. Do everything through SCCM's GUI.

As for benefits, it has more control over rebooting, has maintenance windows, update lists and easy targeting using collections. It is generally for medium to large companies owing to the cost. It's a huge product and if you're sensible will *start* using it for almost everything (OS deployment, config lockdown, inventory etc) not "just updates". However many people seem to stick to just two features, mainly because they don't know any better and lack the experience or training. It does have full reporting to report patch/security compliance. That is probably the biggest win over WSUS which is very poor on reporting.

An alternative might be another 3rd party patch tool if you only want patching. Shavlik did offer a superb product but I'm not sure it's still available.

Mike
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Author Closing Comment

by:waltforbes
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Hello Mike T, your advice is the most comprehensive. I will have to pursue SCCM based on this advice due to greater control over rebooting, maintenance windows, and better reporting.
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